The True Self Is Beyond Thought

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Try to say who you are. It’s difficult and will likely change in a week. To pin down who you are is a lifelong task, and by the time you’ve figured it out, you’re someone else. This is because of the confines of language, and its inability to convey fundamental truths.

Human symbolic systems can lead to massive human innovations and change the course of human history but they are still human systems. Nature doesn’t study calculus before sending a hurricane out or causing a tree to fall. It functions autonomously, without any symbolic systems. Humans need symbolic systems to navigate the world, but they rely on them too extensively at times.

You can’t accurately define yourself within a symbolic system. Whatever it is that you are— you can’t say it. You can’t type it out, or even think it in words. It doesn’t exist in words. It exists beyond all interpretation as a general feeling, a force, what people typically call “the soul”. All that “the soul” is is the part of you that cannot be pinned down, the part of you that doesn’t have any need for language.

The most deeply-ingrained truths of the world are beyond all of this sort of comprehension. The way to understand them is to observe. You can’t share your observations; it’s simply a process of reflection, and then more observation. The closer you look, the more you will see. You’ll become comfortable keeping it to yourself— you have to. There’s no way to put the truth into words.

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